The future of PacificEU relations: with or
without the ACP?
Pacific Conference on the future of the
ACP Group, Samoa, 17-1...
ECDPM
Independent foundation working on ACP-EU
for more than 25 years:
1. Non-partisan facilitation of dialogue among
ACP ...
Structure of presentation
1. Milestones in the ACP and EU reflection
process
2. Emerging general views in the ACP and in
t...
The debate has started…
• ACP Ambassadorial WG on future
perspectives in Brussels, Sipopo HoS
declaration, Eminent Persons...
ACP: between critical
perceptions….
•“Post-colonial configuration with lack of
internal coherence”
•“Overly dependent on E...
…and positive perceptions
•Strong growth in many ACP countries
•ACP (sub) regions and countries with
growing influence
•Nu...
What do ACP and EU have in
common?
•Almost 40 years of unique contractual
partnership: common values, joint
institutions a...
Emerging views in the ACP
1.Status quo is NOT an option to ensure
continued relevance of ACP Group
2.Stronger political pa...
Emerging views in the EU
1. Recognition of economic progress in many
individual ACP countries
2. Growing focus on regional...
Pacific: increasingly
attractive for global players
• Australia & New Zealand: key donors
• Growing presence China (natura...
Where does the European Union
(EU) fit in this picture?
• 2012: EU Strategy for the Pacific “Pacific is
emerging foreign p...
Some Pacific perceptions on
benefits of ACP Group
membership
•Bargaining power: ACP has helped to get
increased recognitio...
Some Pacific perceptions on the EU
and the Cotonou Partnership (value
added)
•EU: major donor of development aid
•Sector a...
Pacific perceptions on the EU and the
Cotonou Partnership (critical
perspectives)
•Unequal partnership in spite of declare...
What are the perceived EU’s interests
in the Pacific?
•Fisheries (tuna = 50% of total European
consumption)
•Natural resou...
POSSIBLE SCENARIOS FOR POST
2020
1. Status quo? “Group must adapt and
reshape itself” (Samoa PM)
2. EU Agreement with an A...
How to promote an effective
reflection process?
1.ACP and Pacific region/ countries should be in the
driving seat
2.Realis...
Thank you!
www.ecdpm.org
gl@ecdpm.org

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The future of Pacific-EU relations: with or without the ACP?

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Pacific Conference on the future of the ACP Group, Samoa, 17-19 October 2013
Geert Laporte, Deputy Director, European Centre for Development Policy Management

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The future of Pacific-EU relations: with or without the ACP?

  1. 1. The future of PacificEU relations: with or without the ACP? Pacific Conference on the future of the ACP Group, Samoa, 17-19 October 2013 Geert Laporte, Deputy Director, European Centre for Development Policy Management
  2. 2. ECDPM Independent foundation working on ACP-EU for more than 25 years: 1. Non-partisan facilitation of dialogue among ACP and EU 2. Practical and policy relevant analysis 3. Systematic linking with key players in the EU and the ACP/ Pacific through networks and partnerships 4. Capacity building in the ACP to bring more balance in the partnership Page 2
  3. 3. Structure of presentation 1. Milestones in the ACP and EU reflection process 2. Emerging general views in the ACP and in the EU on the future of ACP and ACP-EU relations beyond 2020 3. Emerging views in the Pacific and the EU on the future of ACP and Pacific-EU relations beyond 2020 4. Possible scenarios for the future of PacificEU relations beyond 2020 5. Future steps in the reflection process Page 3
  4. 4. The debate has started… • ACP Ambassadorial WG on future perspectives in Brussels, Sipopo HoS declaration, Eminent Persons Group • DEVCO-EEAS WG and EU-Inter-service Group • Initial reflections in individual EU and ACP countries • Civil society initiatives • Joint Parliamentary Assembly & European Parliament Page 4
  5. 5. ACP: between critical perceptions…. •“Post-colonial configuration with lack of internal coherence” •“Overly dependent on EU aid” •“No political weight at global level” • ACP-EU “relationship fatigue” (PM) Page 5
  6. 6. …and positive perceptions •Strong growth in many ACP countries •ACP (sub) regions and countries with growing influence •Numbers count in global world •Willingness to tackle longstanding issues affecting credibility (e.g financing of the Group) Page 6
  7. 7. What do ACP and EU have in common? •Almost 40 years of unique contractual partnership: common values, joint institutions and dialogue,… •Shared concern over need for “humanisation’’ of globalisation •Common concern for “blue economy” and Cotonou can be “cornerstone” (Pres Marshall islands) Page 7
  8. 8. Emerging views in the ACP 1.Status quo is NOT an option to ensure continued relevance of ACP Group 2.Stronger political partnership beyond aid 3.Broaden Partnership beyond Europe (BRICS, South-South) 4.More prominent role ACP in global fora 5.Financial sustainability = credibility and relevance Page 8
  9. 9. Emerging views in the EU 1. Recognition of economic progress in many individual ACP countries 2. Growing focus on regional and subregional relations (EPAs, joint strategies,…) 3. ACP Group only marginally contributes to EU aspirations for stronger global role 4. ACP Group has no formal place in EU treaties and institutions 5. ACP Group needs to determine its own future with EU and beyond Page 9
  10. 10. Pacific: increasingly attractive for global players • Australia & New Zealand: key donors • Growing presence China (natural resources, fisheries, immigration,…) • India, Indonesia, South Korea (more diplomatic representations, military cooperation, aid in kind,..) • Increasing interest Russia (visits MFA Lavrov, aid, investments, recognition Abkhazia, South Ossetia) • USA: increasing presence since 2011 (aid, economic, military and security support, energy, natural resources, education, health,..) • Japan: regaining interest and alliance building with USA and EU Page 10
  11. 11. Where does the European Union (EU) fit in this picture? • 2012: EU Strategy for the Pacific “Pacific is emerging foreign policy priority for EU”) • EU: second aid partner in the region: Total 10th EDF 750 million EURO • EU key priorities: development cooperation, trade, climate change, fisheries, regional integration, governance,…) • Perceived “contradictions” in EU messages: differentiation in the allocation of aid, no increase of aid in EDF 11, closing down EU representation,..) Page 11
  12. 12. Some Pacific perceptions on benefits of ACP Group membership •Bargaining power: ACP has helped to get increased recognition of Pacific in EU and at international level •Enhanced South-South and intra-ACP cooperation = more global awareness of challenges Pacific (climate change, “vulnerability” small islands states alliances in UN and WTO, g7+ grouping of post conflict countries •Substantial aid through ACP Page 12
  13. 13. Some Pacific perceptions on the EU and the Cotonou Partnership (value added) •EU: major donor of development aid •Sector and budget support = strengthening government systems + incentive for other donors •Model for regional cooperation and integration •Climate change (key for Pacific) •Renewable energy, (eco)-tourism, etc Page 13
  14. 14. Pacific perceptions on the EU and the Cotonou Partnership (critical perspectives) •Unequal partnership in spite of declared principles of “reciprocity” and “equal partnership” : •Strongly aid driven partnership = dependency •marginalisation Pacific vis-à-vis Africa •“Splitting up” the region in EPA negotiations (IEPA with PNG) •EU has put burden on capacities of the region (negotiation of EPA, rigid procedures, heavy conditions, absorption capacities, NAO system is heavy burden on small administrations of small islands,…) • Page 14
  15. 15. What are the perceived EU’s interests in the Pacific? •Fisheries (tuna = 50% of total European consumption) •Natural resources: large unexplored potential of resources (including unknown seabed resources) •Alliances on climate change •Political and diplomatic capital (Pacific = 15 sovereign votes= numbers count) Page 15
  16. 16. POSSIBLE SCENARIOS FOR POST 2020 1. Status quo? “Group must adapt and reshape itself” (Samoa PM) 2. EU Agreement with an Asia-Pacific Group of countries? 3. Separate EU-Pacific Agreement? 4. EU regional agreements under one ACP umbrella with specific role and value added? “ACP Group should not do everything” (Samoa PM) 5. Other scenarios? Page 16
  17. 17. How to promote an effective reflection process? 1.ACP and Pacific region/ countries should be in the driving seat 2.Realistic political economy assessments are needed: address difficult key strategic questions upfront and interest articulation 3.From intentions to implementation: show results 4.Move debate out of Brussels to ACP countries and regions 5.Drop taboos: assess what has (not) worked and why + critical introspection on both sides beyond vested interests and political correctness Page 17
  18. 18. Thank you! www.ecdpm.org gl@ecdpm.org Page 18

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